PRODUCING A COMPOSITE MATERIAL
BASED ON ZIRCON CONCENTRATE AND NANOCRYSTALLINE
V. B. Kul’met’eva,
S. E. Porozova,
E. S. Gnedina,
B. L. Krasnyi,
V. P. Tarasovskii,
and A. B. Krasnyi
Translated from Novye Ogneupory, No. 10, pp. 33 – 37, October 2009.
Original article submitted June 1, 2009.
The effects have been examined of adding nanocrystalline zirconium dioxide powder stabilized by yttrium ox
ide on the production and properties of a composite material based on zircon. It is found that the zirconium di
oxide particles at the boundaries of the zircon grains slow the consolidation of the zircon matrix in sintering
and zircon grain growth.
Keywords: nanocrystalline zirconium dioxide, ceramic composite material.
The high prices are a factor retarding the general intro-
duction of ceramic materials in various branches of industry.
The cost of a ceramic can be substantially reduced by the di-
rect employment of mineral raw materials.
Zircon is zirconium orthosilicate ZrSiO
and is used as a
natural mineral raw material in the refractories industry, cast-
ing, and generally in the production of building materials and
drainage fitments. About 10% of zircon is processed to give
zirconium dioxide . A ceramic based on zircon has a com
paratively low coefficient of linear expansion and moderate
thermal conductivity. The thermal shock resistance of zircon
exceeds that of corundum, zirconium dioxide, and mullite,
and also it has high chemical resistance in acid media .
Ceramic materials have a wide range of properties and
on many parameters are better than metals and polymers, but
they have a major shortcoming: low level of failure viscosity,
which is due to the ionic-covalent type of atomic bonds. A
method of increasing the resistance to crack growth in ce
ramic materials is to produce composite structures. There are
two most effective lines: producing a transformation-hard
ened ceramic with dispersed inclusions of metastable ce
ramic phase or a ceramic strengthened by fibers. Particles of
metastable tetragonal zirconium dioxide are used to
strengthen various ceramic matrices. The most effective re
sults have been obtained on adding them to a corundum ma
trix [3, 4]. Added nanodimensional powders favor the con-
solidation of the ceramic and reduce the sintering tempera-
The present concerns the effect of added ZrO
powder stabilized by Y
on the making of a composite
based on ZrSiO
We used a zircon concentrate termed Zircon standard
grade (Possen Erzconter), for which the certificate states the
following wt.% composition: ZrO
amount) 32.7, SiO
(free) 0.26, Fe
0.18, CaO 0.1, MgO 0.03, Cr
0.14; the zirco
nium dioxide stabilized by 5 wt.% yttrium oxide was added
in the form of a powder made by the reaction between a solu
tion containing the chlorides of these metals and an aqueous
solution of ammonia (Start Scientific Production Business
Corporation, Perm, Russia) .
The powders were ground and mixed in a SAND plane
tary mill at a speed of 160 rpm in the dry or in 0.5% aqueous
solution of polyvinyl alcohol (PVA); the ratio of the masses
of powder, grinding bodies, and liquid were 1:2:1. The dried
and ground powders were used in making specimens by cold
uniaxial pressing (CP) and cold isostatic pressing (CIP). The
temporary technological binder was a 4% aqueous solution
of polyvinyl alcohol grade PVS 7/2 (GOST 10779) to a level
of 10% of the mass of powder. The sintering was performed
Refractories and Industrial Ceramics Vol. 50, No. 5, 2009
1083-4877/09/5005-0372 © 2009 Springer Science+Business Media, Inc.
Powder Material Science Center, GOUVPO Perm State Technical
University, Perm, Russia.
Bakor Scientific Center Limited, Shcherbinka, Moscow Region,